Schmidt Elected SIGMA President

U.S. Venture chairman to lead independent gasoline marketers association

Thomas Schmidt

APPLETON, Wis. -- Thomas Schmidt, executive chairman of the board for U.S. Venture Inc. has been elected as president of SIGMA, a national trade association representing independent motor fuel marketers and chain retailers in the United States.

As president, Schmidt will help set the direction of the association, including shaping policy and working on legislative and regulatory issues on a national level.

"This truly a great honor," said Schmidt. "I look forward to working with the entire SIGMA board of directors, staff and all of our members to further the success of SIGMA and its mission of maintaining a free marketplace that allows competition and consumer demand to drive the market."

SIGMA represents 260 marketer members who account for one-third of the petroleum retail market; selling more than 56 billion gallons of motor fuel a year. SIGMA's mission is to maintain a free, fully competitive marketplace to help keep consumer fuel costs down. It is a volunteer trade organization

In addition to his responsibilities at U.S. Venture, and now at SIGMA, Schmidt has held a number of high profile leadership positions within the petroleum industry, including president of the Wisconsin Petroleum Marketers & Convenience Stores Association (WPMCA) and director of SIGMA.

Schmidt has been with U.S. Venture for 41 years, starting in the petroleum operations division.

He was named president of the firm in 1990 and became executive chairman in 2007.

SIGMA was founded in 1958 as the Society of Independent Gasoline Marketers of America in response to the growing need to present and promote the concerns and challenges of independent petroleum marketers to the government, the public and the larger petroleum industry.

Based in Appleton Wis., U.S. Venture Inc. is an energy and transportation products distributor and marketer. Its largest division of U.S. Venture, U.S. Oil, distributes gasoline and fuel throughout the Upper Midwest. Its Express Convenience Centers division operates 16 corporately owned Express retail centers and five franchisees located in Wisconsin throughout the Fox Valley, Oshkosh and Green Bay.

U.S. Petroleum Equipment installs pumps, tanks and other petroleum-related equipment for c-stores and commercial and industrial businesses and also takes care of customers' environmental cleanup needs. U.S. AutoForce offers automotive tires, parts, and lubricants, offering a breadth and strength of products. Custom Manufacturing supplies and forms metal tubing for a variety of industries. U.S. Lubricants manufacturers motor oil, cutting oil and related products and sells them, along with grease and other major oil products, to industrial and commercial facilities. The company's Oil Chek program offers oil analysis with an automated program provides a thorough examination of used oil, generating a report on lubrication systems, designed to spot abnormalities in a lubrication system. HVAC wholesaler Design Air handles heating, ventilating and air conditioning equipment and provides engineering and design services for installation contractors.